A father is the male parent while mother is the female parent. Parents have a role to play in bringing up their children whether they are biological parents or not. They have a role in development of personality of their children. The conventional roles duty of every parent has been to raise children from all perspectives be it financially, or emotionally among other aspects of growth.
However, in contemporary times, distinguishing parental roles based on gender is difficult given that mothers are getting into employment to provide for their families while fathers are getting more involved in childcare for the benefit of the family. Recently there has been a call to introduce paternity leave to allow fathers to spend more time with their families. These recent developments notwithstanding, some roles fit women perfectly while others are meant for fathers.
Mothers’ roles start immediately after birth. Mothers prepare food for their families, clean the house, clothes, utensils among others hence ensures the biological needs of their children are available.
They also teach their children to differentiate between wrong and right and by so doing, they ensure the kids are healthy and have respect for themselves and others. Mothers act as role models and teach their children especially girls on their roles when in their marital homes incase they get married. When girls reach adolescent stage, it is the mother’s role to teach them on sex education and body changes.
On the other hand, fathers are the natural protectors and providers in a family. Most children look up to their fathers for provision and in them, children see role models. Consequently, a child’s respect for self and others hinges mainly on what the father portrays in day-to-day life.
Moreover, through fathers, children know their sexuality and research shows that involvement of fathers in a child’s upbringing creates a bearing sexual identity whether in girls or in boys (Eusina 59). Therefore, the activity of the fathers determines the level of maleness of his sons as well as the femaleness of his daughters. The two are directly proportional. Traditionally, the role of a father is to protect his family and provide an optimal living environment.
Comparison of roles played by parents
Despite the fact that fathers and mothers have different roles to play in a family, some roles transcend gender differences and call for involvement of the both sexes. For instance, education matters call for participation of both mothers and fathers for home is the first school for any child.
Parents teach their children core values of life including masculinity and femininity integrating them in the society. Parents direct, guide, and assist their children to ensure personal development and growth especially in the religious matters and in education (Penfield 205). They also support and motivate their children to achieve personal goals in life or incase of a tragic situation in life. Parents also help their children to develop social and emotional skills.
Parents have different and similar roles to perform in the family. Incase one of them does not perform his or her role; the effects are seen especially in their children. Parents have either genetic roles or basic traditional roles to play within the family establishment. Nevertheless, with the changing times, parental roles are becoming reversed by the day. Single motherhood places the mother in the shoes of a father and even fathers are assuming motherly roles in a bid to keep the family unit intact.
Eusina, J. Father Come Home. USA: John Hopkins University press, 1993.
Penfield, E. Short Takes. New York: Longman press, 1978.